Brad takes second place in the Japanese GP Sprint race
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing used tunnel vision at Motegi, and unveiled their advanced and reactive engineering arm to classify the KTM RC16s in 2nd and 4th thanks to the skills of Brad Binder and teammate Jack Miller respectively. The South African was 5th fastest in qualifying and an undisputed runner-up during the fourteenth Grand Prix Sprint of the season, taking place in dry and warm conditions in Japan.
Many eyes stared into the Red Bull KTM pitbox when the doors rolled up on Friday. Both Brad and Jack were using updated versions of their RC16 prototype race bikes complete with chassis modifications used by test rider Dani Pedrosa on his run to 4th position at the recent San Marino Grand Prix. Brad was immediately up to speed around a short and looping 14-corner layout where he’d finished as runner-up the previous year.
Brad set the mark late into P2 with a double fast lap blitz that shattered the eight-year-old lap record. The achievement left #33 firmly in 1st place and ready for the sessions on Saturday. After Q2 in similar conditions Brad was slender half a second from Pole Position.
The MotoGP Sprint was run over 12 laps during the afternoon. Brad charged into 3rd position during the opening corners. He passed his teammate and shadowed Jorge Martin, finishing second.
“I had a great start and dived into Turn 1 past a couple of guys on the inside. My plan was to get up to the front straightaway but the pace was incredible and I could not believe the lap-times we were doing. It was a good race though and I’m happy to be back on the podium. My boys did an amazing job and my bike has worked better than it has all year so let’s try again tomorrow.”